REBUILDING THE WALLS OF JERUSALEM
“If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do? Psalms 11:3
“In the 20th year of Artaxerxes, king of Persia, (445/444 BC), Nehemiah was cup-bearer to the king. Learning that the remnant of Jews in Judah were in distress and that the walls of Jerusalem were broken down, he asked the king for permission to return and rebuild the city.” Selected
When Nehemiah assessed the desolation of the walls of Jerusalem at night, he saw rubbish and debris from the past. It must be removed before the foundation of the wall could be built. See Nehemiah 2:12-17.
SANBALLET THE OBSTRUCTIONIST WITH AN AGENDA
The Jewish governor, Nehemiah, was determined to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem and carry out his reforms among the Jews --but he had an opponent called Sanballet who was a Samaritan with an agenda --He wanted to build a temple and establish a priesthood on Mount Gerizim.
“When Sanballat the Horonite, [ A descendent of Esau] and Tobiah the servant, the Ammonite, heard of it, it grieved them exceedingly that there was come a man to seek the welfare of the children of Israel.” Nehemiah 2:10
Those obstructionists of long ago had an agenda and made many attempts to hinder the wall being built.
“But when Sanballat the Horonite, and Tobiah the servant, the Ammonite, and Geshem the Arabian, heard it, they laughed us to scorn, and despised us, and said, What is this thing that ye do? will ye rebel against the king?
Then answered I them, and said unto them, The God of heaven, he will prosper us; therefore we his servants will arise and build: but ye have no portion, nor right, nor memorial, in Jerusalem.
Here the enemies of god questioned the stability of the wall:
“Now Tobiah the Ammonite was by him, and he said, Even that which they build, if a fox go up, he shall even break down their stone wall.” Nehemiah 4:3
The Spirit of Sanballat is to hinder and discourage us—to get us to quit what God has called us to do. We must discern the enemies of God.
THE WALLS AND ITS BUILDERS
The third chapter is a record of the faithful builders and their work on the wall. It shows us that daughters worked --But some nobles did not work to their shame!
The wall was built because the people had a mind to work and pray. They also defended themselves with their swords.
“And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.
If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, from doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking thine own words:
Then shalt thou delight thyself in the LORD; and I will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth, and feed thee with the heritage of Jacob thy father: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.” Isa 58:12-14